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Wrestling Wreport: Penn State downs #11 Illinois, 31-3

Megaludis avenges last year's national finals loss to Delgado as Penn State beats Illinois 31-3.

Megaludis downs 4th-ranked Delgado 5-4
Megaludis downs 4th-ranked Delgado 5-4

#1 Penn State 31 - #11 Illinois 3

wt. Winner dec. Loser Bout Score Team Score
125: #2 Nico Megaludis PSU dec. #4 Jesse Delgado ILL, 5-4 3-0
133: #11 Zane Richards ILL dec. (SV) #15 Jimmy Gulibon PSU, 3-1 (sv) 3-3
141: #2 Zain Retherford PSU maj. dec. John Fahy ILL, 15-3 7-3
149: Zack Beitz PSU dec. #19 Caleb Ervin ILL, 4-2 10-3
157: #4 Dylan Alton PSU dec. #12 Zac Brunson ILL, 5-2 13-3
165: #1 David Taylor PSU maj. dec. #12 Jackson Morse ILL, 11-3 17-3
174: #3 Matt Brown PSU maj. dec. Tony Dallago ILL, 12-2 21-3
184: #2 Ed Ruth PSU maj. dec. Nikko Reyes ILL, 14-3 25-3
197: #7 Morgan McIntosh PSU dec. Jeff Koepke ILL, 10-3 28-3
285: Jon Gingrich PSU dec. Chris Lopez ILL, 6-1 31-3

Random Observations

-James Franklin attended the first two home duals after he was announced as Penn State's next head coach.  I was hoping this was because he was becoming a wrestling fan.  Unfortunately, he wasn't there Friday night.  I can describe how that makes me feel in meme form:


-Officiating in wrestling is always a crap shoot at best, but this dual was especially horrendous.  It got so bad that Cael Sanderson, who is seldom animated or vociferous, yelled at the officials during Matt Brown's match.  After a missed takedown call as time ran out in the 2nd period, Cael yelled "AND THERE'S TWO OF YOU" as he walked off the mat.  It takes a pretty bad call to get Cael Sanderson angry.

-Without a doubt the match of the night was the rematch of Megaludis and Delgado.  Nico controlled the bout from the beginning and was the aggressor throughout. Delgado basically hung onto Nico the entire first period, which resulted in a stall call.  Nico used a reversal and notched a takedown in the 2nd to take a 4-2 lead into the final period.  Delgado reversed Nico to briefly tie the match but Nico escaped and held off any late takedown attempts to win 5-4. The match got the crowd into it and may go a long way into the final rankings before the Big Tens.

Bonus Points

It looked like David Taylor's streak of bonus point wins was coming to an end. Taylor had a 7-3 lead late in the 3rd and was riding Morse well, but was well short of the 8 point margin needed for a major decision.  But this is David Taylor, and he does things no other wrestler can--and he did it again on Friday.  With time running out, he turned Morse twice for two quick back points and widened the margin of victory to 11-3 for the major.  Morse is tough and took Taylor down in the 2nd and rode him well, but David proved to be too much for the young wrestler.

Ed Ruth spent most of the match riding Nikko Reyes.  Ruth finished with over 4 minutes of riding time in his 14-3 major decision. Hulk Hands bullied Dallago to a 12-2 major that almost ended early.  Brown threw Dallago to his back in the 2nd period and nearly pinned him but the fall was never called. Then there was this:

Despite having a serious cradle locked up and exposing Dallago's back to the mat for several seconds, Brown was never awarded any nearfall points.  I'm sure this was one of the many reasons Cael was angry.

Decisions, decisions

Morgan McIntosh beat Jeff Koepke 10-3, just missing out on a major.  McIntosh has looked good lately; he used 3 takedowns and several stall points for the final margin.  Morgan's aggressiveness gave the ref little option, McIntosh was the wrestler taking the shots and Koepke was just holding Morgan off.

If it was not for Andrew Alton,  Zack Beitz would probably be ranked.  He used a takedown, reversal and riding time point to beat 19th-ranked Caleb Ervin 4-2.  This isn't the first ranked wrestler Beitz has beaten.  The coaches keep asking Beitz to move up a weight and fill in for an injured starter and all he does is go out there and put in great matches every time. I hate to keep bringing this up, but Penn State's depth is pretty impressive.

So Close

Jimmy Gulibon's dual meet troubles continue as he dropped a 3-1 sudden victory defeat. Neither wrestler could score outside of two escapes and the match went into overtime.  Gulibon took the shot 30 seconds in but Richards countered for the winning takedown.  I know Richards is ranked ahead of Jimmy but I'm sure that's one he would have liked to have back.  Hopefully Gulibon can build off of this match.

Up Next: at Michigan State, Friday, Jan. 31, 7 p.m.

Penn State - Illinois photos